Five college courses every student should take

Written by

Harry Bennett


November 10, 2017


college courses every student should take

The acceptance process has finished and you have finally gained admittance to the college or university of your choice for the coming semester. Big load off your shoulders right? Now it’s time to start the complex process of choosing what courses you are going to take over the next several years in order to complete your degree. As always, it is highly recommended that you keep in touch with your guidance counselor and ensure that you are both on the same page as to where you see yourself by the time you are a senior.

Although it is a great advantage, it is not the end of the world if you don’t already have a career
path or major in mind. Coming in as a freshman or a transfer student will require you to
complete plenty of courses before you receive that sacred diploma.

When going over your academic plan with your counselor you will be looking at several factors.
How many units per semester you will be enrolling in, what your year-by-year goal is and which
general education courses you are going to take. Many students graze over this portion of their
schedule without understanding that these classes should be picked carefully to set you up for job
success in the future.

Finding the easiest classes to fill in those general education requirements should not be your approach here.

Think of this as an opportunity to further your knowledge in other facets of education and to round out your skillset in ways that will make you stand out in the job market. Let us take a look at the top five courses every college student should take no matter their career choice.

Public Speaking

In many colleges and universities, public speaking classes are the most hated among student. It can be highly stressful and cause loads of anxiety for certain people. The good thing is that colleges offer beginner courses to help you hone in on this skill. In the real world, there will be a very important point in your career where you are going to have to speak in front of a group of people. It doesn’t matter if your are a engineer or an artist. So why not get those jitters out of the way now?

Communication courses are usually filled with other students that are taking it for the same reason as you. This is a very important class to cover considering it will be highly unlikely you will have another opportunity to be able to practice this skill before you graduate.


Marketing is a part of every business in every industry. That is why it is important to have a general knowledge in this course of study. Another plus is that most campuses will offer a lot of different types of marketing courses. So it’s not like you are stuck with just a blanket class (unless you are interested in that). Having basic marketing skills in any field will leave you in a much better position to land
a job. It will also help you understand the business side to any given field even if you don’t plan
on being a manager or owner.

Digital Media

A digital media course is going to teach you several different skill sets relevant to today’s job market. These can can range from the basics of reporting to introductory web design. Digital classes can be a lot of fun and allow you to tap into a little bit of your creative side. Building your own site can be key when showing off your portfolio to potential employers!

A class in digital media will force you to do your homework. And I don’t mean that these classes have a lot of homework, I’m saying it will make you do your research. Journalism based courses are highly oriented with accuracy and having credible sources. Why wouldn’t you want to have some knowledge in those fields? Plus, practicing writing can never hurt.

Foreign Language

Have fun with this one. Pick a language that you would be interested in learning. Pick anything! The simple fact that you can show future employers that you have interest and knowledge about learning a new language and culture means you are open to challenges that will improve yourself. You don’t need to take four years of Spanish or French. Dabble in a course for a semester or two. It will broaden your horizon and who knows, you may want to become fluent in that certain language!


When you read that last word you probably rolled your eyes and chalked this course up to be the least appealing. Although law classes are not the number one choice for many, plenty of colleges offer several types of courses that may spark your interest. Either way it is very important to know our nation’s law and how it applies to your field. Understanding this course of study will give you the confidence of knowing your rights and when you may be pushing the boundaries. Even better, law classes will provide examples of high level problem-solving that anyone can use in life.

Final Thoughts

Choosing an academic plan for many students means picking the quickest route with the least difficulty. Try to veer away from this type of thinking. Although there is no reason to add unnecessary courses to your workload, it is important to equip yourself in as many different ways as possible before you graduate. Employers are going to choose the well-rounded candidate who has a little bit of knowledge in multiple areas over the candidate with credentials in one field. Remember to keep in constant contact with your career counselor and think of what courses can truly help you out in the long run. Happy scheduling!


Written by:  Harry Bennett

Harry R. Bennett III is freelance journalist who took an interesting path during college. Bennett attended five different schools and switched his major before graduating with a B.A. in journalism from California State University, Northridge. He has dealt with the ins and outs of transferring, admissions, financial aid and counseling from Division I Universities, small private NAIA schools and junior colleges across the nation. As an ex-collegiate athlete, Bennett has truly experienced the college life in every way possible and knows what it takes choose a major and earn a degree.

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